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Small Farmer's Journal
PO Box 1627
Sisters, Oregon 97759
800-876-2893
541-549-2064
agrarian@smallfarmersjournal.com
Mon - Thu, 8am - 4pm PDT

Delivery Wagon Plans

Delivery Wagon Plans

Delivery Wagon Plans

At one of our auctions I purchased a copy of a 1911 edition of The Blacksmith and Wheelwright which featured a set of plans for a Delivery Wagon. Few categories of horsedrawn vehicles generate as much excitement as a true commercial delivery wagon. I wish we had more opportunities to run them through our auction sales as they bring with them such a delightful mix of history and practicality. So we offer this plan and notes with hopes that the wagon builders out there will more frequently revisit this excellent form. It is noteworthy that the author of this plan speaks so well of the innovations this design represents, innovations which vastly improved the utility of the vehicle. This discussion speaks to the elegance of engineering design prevalent 100 years ago. – LRM

Useful Vehicle for Bakers, Milkmen, Grocers or General Purpose.

The length of city bakers’ and milk delivery wagon bodies is generally 7 feet; width across 42 inches and the 36 inch wheels turn under the body, making the height of the body from the floor 40 inches. Which gives about 3 1/2 inches space between body and wheels when the 1/2 inch thickness of tire is deducted.

The objection to these wagons for general delivery purposes is that they are too short and are suspended too high for getting in and out and on this account the “low down” milk, bakers’ and butchers’ delivery wagons were designed and built. While the low down delivery wagon is an improvement, the objectionable features are increased. Suppose the low down body is designed with a regular wagon gear as shown on this working draft and the wheels have to turn under the body, with a five feet wide track, the required space is about 36 inches and if the gear is set in 2 to 3 inches from the front end of the body the space must be 38 to 39 inches, making the length of the gear from center to center 6 feet 10 inches as on this draft while on a city Bakers’ delivery wagon the length of the gear is 5 ft. only. Suppose we carry this gear back, the wheels will strike against the body and will not turn short sufficiently for the width of the street. Suppose we put on high wheels and put under it a short turn fifth wheel with the king bolt set back 15 inches or more, it would turn shorter but not short enough for a 45 inch wide body. All these objections are avoided if we remove the drop center, but then the body will be too high from the floor and two steps are needed on each side for going in and out.

Delivery Wagon Plans

To shorten the frontgear is impracticable, but the rear gear could be moved somewhat toward the front. If the rear part be suspended on elliptical springs, the wheels could be moved forward 6 inches, the length of the gear could be reduced to 6 feet 4 inches, and the length of the body could be reduced to 7 feet or 7 feet 6 inches. The objections are in this case if the body is not shortened it will have too much overhang, and if shortened it will have a cut-off appearance, or in other words, it will destroy the proportions of the body.

Delivery Wagon Plans

Another disadvantage is the expense of building the low down bodies compared with the straight sill structures. If the low down bodies are built without any edge plates applied to the inside or outside of sills, the bodies are not strong enough to carry the weight, and will sag at the center. With a straight sill, no edge plates are necessary and it will carry the necessary weight, but with all those objections the low down wagons increase every year. Their convenience outweighs all other objections. They are handy for country delivery and are fitted up inside to suit either grocers, bakers, butchers or milk delivery, or a combination of the four.

Construction of the Body

The height of the body from the floor in front is 39 inches, and the amount of drop 15 inches, making the height from the floor to door rocker 24 inches; easy to go in and out with one step on each side. The rear drop is 8 inches and could be 2 to 3 inches less by dropping the spring bar and cross spring. The length of the body is divided as follows: the front length is calculated to turn under the body 35 inches. The width of the door is 19 inches, and rear and front door joint to the rear end, 45 inches. This length could be reduced by using a spring shorter than 43 inches. In such a case lower rear wheels must be used, because moving the wheels forward would interfere with the opening of the door.

Delivery Wagon Plans

The rockers are 1 3/4 x 2 5/8 inches. The 3/8 inch thick panels are rabbeted into the thickness and the joints covered with moldings. The bottom boards are rabbeted into the rockers from the bottom surface as shown on the bottom view. The sizes for rocker plates are either 3/8 inch or 1/2 inch thick and 2 inches wide. On this draft the sizes of the front and parts are 1 3/4 x 2 1/8 inches. If the body were 3/4 inch narrower all the four corner parts could be made 1 3/4 inches square. 1 3/4 inches is required for the glass frame to drop and on top of the key is put to hold the glass frames in position, also the lining boards to close all the inside spaces. The front corner posts must be rabbeted on two sides each for the glass frames to slide up and down, 3/8 inch deep. The rear corner posts are 1 3/4 inches square without any glass frame rabbets, but the 3/8 inch thick outside panels are rabbeted in from both outside surfaces, which is also done to the front corner posts. All four former posts are lapped into the rockers and the top rails are lapped to the posts. The four stationary door posts are dressed 1 3/4 x 2 1/8 inches, 1 3/4 inches is the thickness on side view, and 2 1/8 inches the size across. The reason why it is thicker is on account of the lining boards, which are rabbeted into the posts from the inside, and the 3/8 inch thick outside panels are rabbeted into the posts from the outside. One side on each of these four stationary door posts has a glass frame rabbet. These posts on this lower ends are lapped into the rockers, and on the upper ends the top rails are lapped to it.

Besides the eight posts just explained are four more, two in front and two in the rear part of the body. The sizes of all four are alike, 1 1/2 x 1 3/4. On the front ones the glass frame rabbet is on both sides while on the rear on it is on one side only. The framing top and bottom is the same as on the other posts. On the outside surfaces the 3/8 inch thick panels are glued over it and the inside surfaces the 5/16 inch thick lining is rabbeted in, and on the inside surfaces of door posts the rabbets are cut in for the glass frames to slide up and down. The size of the glass frame stuff is 1/2 x 2 inches. Sufficient play room must be given when the glass frames are painted to move by the rabbet easily and also allowance must be made for the swelling.

The size of all the fence rails in 13/16 x 2 7/8 inches and the tip rails 1 1/4 x 6 1/2 shown at center, tapered down on both ends as shown on the side view. The front center part is 1 1/2 x 1 3/4; on top there is a key 3/8 x 1 1/2 inches to allow the glass frame to go in, and below the key is the 3/8 inch thick lining board. There are two end rails on each end. Two are 1 1/4 x 1 7/8 inches curved the same, top and bottom. The other two are 2 inches thick by 6 inches deep at center and curved at top. The rest of the top has eight curves 7/8 square, and the top is covered with 5/16 by 1 3/4 strips, bent on one edge on inside surface only.

Delivery Wagon Plans

The rear has a gate which is shown open and in position to put on baskets and boxes, and held in position when down on a circular guide with a stop on rear end. If wanted to drop it shield up with a strap or chain. The upper part is framed with a glass frame to drop and sizes of posts are 1 1/2 x 1 3/4 inches, same as the small posts on the sides. All the bottom boards are 1/2 inch thick, and each lengthwise joint is left open 3/16 inch which are all shown on bottom view. To strengthen the bottom boards and to keep them well in position, two strips 3/8 x 1 3/4 are screwed to bottom boards and cross bars also shown on bottom view. The front gear under this body is best adapted for a wagon of this kind, it is very strong and most suitable for hard work: its appearance is far superior to the regular wagon gears and can be used with short and one single tree or with a pole with shaft removed and replaced with single trees without removing the center single tree. The rear part is suspended on three springs clipped under the axle outside of the body.

Delivery Wagon Plans

The dimensions for wheels, springs, and axles for such a wagon are as follows:

  • Warner Patent Hubs
  • Diameter of wheels without tires, 34 x 46 inches
  • Diameter of hubs, front and back, 4 1/2 inches
  • Diameter of hub flange outside 6 3/4 inches
  • Diameter hub bands, 3 1/2 x 3 3/4 inches
  • Length of hubs, front and back, 8 1/2 inches
  • Width and thickness of spokes, 1 1/2 x 13/16 inches
  • Number of spokes, front and back 14 x 16
  • Thickness and depth of rims, 1 11/16 x 1 7/8 inches
  • Thickness and width of tires, 1 1/2 x 1 3/4 inches
  • Elliptic Springs Front
  • Length from centers of bolt 36 inches
  • Open out to out, 10 1/2 inches
  • Width of plates 1 3/4 inches
  • Number of plates, 5
  • Thickness of main plates, No 2
  • Thickness of remaining plates, Nos, 2,2,2,3
  • Clipped top and bottom
  • Three Springs Back (Wagon Style)
  • Side Springs
  • Length from centers of bolts 43 inches
  • Length for front part, 23 inches
  • Length of rear part, 20 inches
  • Open out to out, 7 inches
  • Width of plates 1 7/8
  • Number of plates, 6
  • Thickness of main plates, No 2
  • Thickness of remaining plates, Nos 2,2,2,3,4
  • Clipped to axle
  • Cross Spring
  • Length from centers of bolts, 45 inches
  • Open out to out, 6 1/2 inches
  • Width of plates, 1 3/4 inches
  • Number of plates, 6
  • Thickness of main plates, No 1
  • Thickness of remaining plates, Nos 2,2,2,3,3
  • Clipped to cross bar
  • Plain Wagon Axles front and back
  • Size of axle arms and square ends, 1 1/2 inches
  • Size of axle at center, 1 5/8 inches
  • Length of axle arms for 8 1/2 inch long hubs
  • Width of track, out to out, 61 inches
  • Width of body, 42 inches

Spotlight On: Equipment & Facilities

LittleField Notes Mower Notes

LittleField Notes: Mower Notes

by:
from issue:

The horse drawn mowing machine is a marvel of engineering. Imagine a pair of horses turning the energy of their walking into a reciprocal cutting motion able to drop acres of forage at a time without ever burning a drop of fossil fuel. And then consider that the forage being cut will fuel the horses that will in turn cut next year’s crop. What a beautiful concept! Since I’ve been mowing some everyday I’ve had lots of time to think about the workings of these marvelous machines.

The Use and Construction of Home Made Implements

The Use and Construction of Home Made Implements

by: ,
from issue:

It is now possible to purchase a make of machine to suit almost any condition if the money is available. There is no doubt that eventually they will be quite generally used. However, the dry farmers are at present hard pressed financially and in many instances the purchase of very much machinery is out of the question. For the man of small means or limited acreage, a homemade implement may be utilized at least temporarily.

Farm Drum 26 John Deere Grain Binders

Farm Drum #26: John Deere Grain Binders

by:

Friend and Auctioneer Dennis Turmon told us about a couple of John Deere Grain Binders he has in an upcoming auction, and we couldn’t wait to take a look. On a blustery Central Oregon day (sorry about the wind noise), Lynn takes us on a guided tour of the PTO and Ground-Drive versions of this important implement.

Permanent Corncribs

A short piece on the construction of corncribs.

LittleField Notes Spring 2013

LittleField Notes: Spring 2013

by:
from issue:

If we agree that quality of plowing is subject to different criteria at different times and in different fields, then perhaps the most important thing to consider is control. How effectively can I plow to attain my desired field condition based on my choice of plow? The old time plow manufacturers understood this. At one time there were specific moldboards available for every imaginable soil type and condition.

Basil Scarberrys Ground-Drive Forecart

Basil Scarberry’s Ground-Drive Forecart

by:
from issue:

I used an ’84 Chevrolet S-10 rear end to build my forecart, turn it over to get right rotation, used master cylinder off buggy and 2” Reese hitch, extend hitch out to use P.T.O. The cart is especially useful for tedding hay. However, its uses are virtually unlimited. We use it for hauling firewood on a trailer, for pulling a disc and peg tooth harrow, for hauling baled hay on an 8’ x 16’ hay wagon, and just for a jaunt about the farm and community.

John Deere No 12A Combine

John Deere No. 12-A Straight-Through Combine

from issue:

It is only natural for the owner of a new combine to want to try his machine as early as possible. This results in most new combines being started in the field before the crop is ready for combining. As soon as a binder is seen in the neighbor’s field, the urge to start becomes uncontrollable. When grain is ready for binding, it is not ready for straight combining.

A Step Back in Time with the Barron Tree Planter

A Step Back in Time with the Barron Tree Planter

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from issue:

The 18th century saw a tremendous interest in landscaping private parkland on a grand scale with the movement of entire hills and mature trees, all by man and horse power, to fulfill the designs of celebrated gardeners such as Capability Brown. In the mid 1800s the movement of mature trees was revolutionised by the introduction of the Barron tree transplanter. The first planter was designed and built by Barron for the transplantation of maturing trees at Elvaston Castle in Derbyshire.

Walsh No Buckle Harness

from issue:

When first you become familiar with North American working harness you might come to the erroneous conclusion that, except for minor style variations, all harnesses are much the same. While quality and material issues are accounting for substantive differences in the modern harness, there were also interesting and important variations back in the early twentieth century which many of us today either have forgotten or never knew about. Perhaps the most significant example is the Walsh No Buckle Harness.

"Work Horse Handbook, 2nd Edition" by Lynn Miller

Draft Collars and How To Size Them

It is difficult to accurately measure a horse’s neck without fitting. In other words, there are so many variables involved in the shape and size of a horse’s neck that the only accurate and easy way to size the neck is to use several collars and put them on one at a time until fitting is found.

The Brabants Farm

The Brabants’ Farm

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from issue:

The Brabants’ Farm is a multi purpose farming operation whose main goal is to promote “horsefarming.” Our philosophy is to support the transformation of regional conventional agriculture and forestry into a sustainable, socially responsible, and less petroleum dependent based agriculture, by utilizing animal drawn technology (“horsefarming”), and by meeting key challenges in 21st century small scale agriculture and forestry in Colombia and throughout South America.

Mini Horse Haying

Mini Horse Haying

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from issue:

The first mini I bought was a three year old gelding named Casper. He taught me a lot about what a 38 inch mini could do just by driving me around the neighborhood. He didn’t cover the miles fast, but he did get me there! It wasn’t long before several more 38 inch tall minis found their way home. I presently have four minis that are relatively quiet, responsive to the bit, and can work without a lot of drama.

Haying With Horses

Haying With Horses

If the reader is considering the construction of a barn we encourage you to give more than passing thought to allowing the structure of the gable to be open enough to accommodate the hanging of a trolley track. It is difficult or impossible to retrofit a truss-built barn, which may have many supports crisscrossing the inside gable, to receive hay jags. At least allowing for the option in a new construction design will leave the option for loose hay systems in the future.

Fjordworks Plowing the Market Garden

Fjordworks: Plowing the Market Garden Part 1

In a horse-powered market garden in the 1- to 10-acre range the moldboard plow can still serve us very well as one valuable component within a whole tool kit of tillage methods. In the market garden the plow is used principally to turn in crop residue or cover crops with the intention of preparing the ground to sow new seeds. In these instances, the plow is often the most effective tool the horse-powered farmer has on hand for beginning the process of creating a fine seed bed.

New Horse-drawn Side Delivery Rakes from Europe

New Horse-drawn Side Delivery Rakes from Europe

In Northern Italy the two agricultural machinery manufacturers MAINARDI A. s.r.l. and REPOSSI Macchine Agricole s.r.l. produce a vast range of haying equipment with pto and hydraulic drive, also hay rakes with mechanical drive by the rear wheels. The majority of the sold machines of this type are currently used with small tractors and motor cultivators. The technology of these rakes is based on implements which were developed in the 1940s, when animal traction still played an important role in Italy’s agriculture.

Multi-Purpose Tool Carrier Equi Idea Multi-V

Multi-Purpose Tool Carrier: EQUI IDEA Multi-V

Building on the experiences with a tool carrier named Multi, consisting of a reversible plow interchangeable with a 5-tine cultivator, the Italian horse drawn equipment manufacturer EQUI IDEA launched in 2012 a new multi-purpose tool carrier named Multi-V. The “V” in its name refers to the first field of use, organic vineyards of Northern Italy. Later on, by designing more tools, other applications were successfully added, such as vegetable gardens and tree nurseries.

An Efficient, Economical Barn

by:
from issue:

A well thought out, functional barn should be the center piece of any farming endeavor, horse powered or fossil fueled, that involves livestock. After building and using two previous barns during our lifetimes, I think the one we now have has achieved a level of convenience, efficiency, and economy that is worth passing on.

Small Farmer's Journal

Small Farmer's Journal
PO Box 1627
Sisters, Oregon 97759
800-876-2893
541-549-2064
agrarian@smallfarmersjournal.com
Mon - Thu, 8am - 4pm PDT